University Benchmarks

Ranking the Top 100 Academic Universities ranks the universities that attract and produce the best academic students.

There are many 'University Rankings' on the internet. Most rankings rely heavily on subjective metrics like 'reputation' and 'selectivity'. UniversityBenchmarks is purely an academic ranking model. The rankings are based on the reported academic and financial metrics of the colleges. There are no subjective factors like 'reputation' that are used. The calculations are performed using normal statistical models. All universities are considered equal and there is no weighting of the ranking categories.

The university 2014-2015 dataset is comprised of over 2400 US Universities & Colleges and comes from multiple sources using the most favorable reported metrics for a university.

The universities are ranked against each other in each filtered set. It is an iterative process whereby lower ranking universities are removed and the set is re-ranked until the final set of 100 is reached.

Selecting 'Rank Top 10 Only' will show the Top 10 for each filter category ranked against each other.

The academic rankings of the universities within the major conferences (ACC, Big12, Big10, Pac12, SEC) are available.

The 2017 rankings will be available in August.

  • It is possible for universities to be ranked higher/lower than one another depending on the filter set.
  • Conference averages are based on the top 8 schools in the conference.
  • Public Schools are highlighted
  • Clicking on the university's seal icon will take you to the university's website.

Ranking Fields

Rank - Overall rank based on the average of the ranking fields (Scores, Difficulty, Smartest, Brainpower, Faculty and Research).

Scores - SAT & ACT scores. The university's test scores are corrected for dropout rate when score level is Good, Excellent or Elite. This will slightly boost scores for highly competitive schools.

Difficulty - Academic rigor is estimated based on how difficult it is to get an "A" at the university. An estimated GPA at the university is calculated for the average US Student. University grade inflation, average GPA, and STEM density are factors.

Smartest - University that can field the highest scoring students based on the average US University size. Higher Smartest Rank = "Smartest for the Average University"

Brainpower - The average "smartest" rank using 5 reference populations (CalTech, MIT, Stanford, GaTech and Berkeley). Higher Brainpower Rank = "Higher Density of Smart Students". The university ranked higher can mathematically field 'X' number of smarter students than universities ranked below them.

Faculty - Ranking based on number of % of faculty with awards and academy membership.

Research - Ranking is achieved by iteratively ranking the average of 3 research metrics (r-pop, r-stem, r-other ). The lowest ranked college is then removed and the new set is re-ranked. The result is the schools with potentially the strongest research environments per student bubble up to the top regardless of size or research budget.

  • r-pop - Average research spending for student population
  • r-stem - STEM research spending
  • r-other - Other/Medical/Health research spending

Salary ROI - "Salary Return on Investment" is not used in the overall ranking but is provided for additional information. Using the undergraduate average starting and mid-career salaries, the rank is based on a 20yr salary accumulation (with raises) minus the cost of a 4 year education at the university. Salaries are normalized across the country using the average COLA for the university's geo-economic region (7 regions total). The COLA effect is diminished by the level of the university. Elite, Excellent and Good universities have a greater distribution of graduates across the country and a diminishing COLA effect. The resultant value would be the graduate's spending potential over the 20yr period.

Overall ROI - "Overall Return on Investment" is not used in the overall ranking but is provided for additional information. The average of Overall Rank and Salary ROI. This would be the "Best academic bang for the buck". Colleges that produce the best education, at the best price, with the best return will be ranked higher.

Color Key - ranks are colorized as follows 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 50 100

The 2016 University Academic Rankings

Santa Clara University

2016 University Academic Rankings

Santa Clara University (also referred to as Santa Clara) is a private non-profit Jesuit university located in Santa Clara, California. It has 5,435 full-time undergraduate students, and 3,335 graduate students. Founded in 1851, Santa Clara University is the oldest operating institution of higher learning in California, and has remained in its original location for 164 years. The university's campus surrounds the historic Mission Santa Clara de Asis, which traces its founding to 1776. The campus mirrors the Mission's architectural style, and provides a fine early example of Mission Revival Architecture.

The university offers bachelor's degrees, master's degrees, and doctoral degrees through its six colleges, the School of Arts and Sciences, School of Education and Counseling Psychology, Leavey School of Business, School of Engineering, Jesuit School of Theology, and School of Law. Santa Clara has produced Rhodes Scholars and has been recognized as a top producer of Fulbright Scholars.

Santa Clara's alumni have made their presence felt on the national and international stage. Among Santa Clara's alumni are governors, congressmen, mayors, senators, and presidential cabinet members. Santa Clara alumni founded Nvidia and Farmer's Insurance, and created JavaScript. Santa Clara's alumni have won a number of honors, including Pulitzer Prizes, the NBA MVP Award, and induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Santa Clara alumni have served as mayors of San Francisco, Los Angeles, Oakland, San Jose, and Washington, DC. Both the current Governor and Lieutenant Governor of California attended Santa Clara.

Santa Clara's sports teams are called the Broncos. Their colors are red and white. The Broncos compete at the NCAA Division I levels as members of the West Coast Conference in 19 sports. The Broncos own a long history of success on the national stage in a number of sports, including NCAA championships in both men's and women's soccer. Santa Clara's student athletes have also achieved success after graduation, with 54 MLB, 24 NFL, and 12 NBA players having attended the school. Of Santa Clara's Olympians, 14 have won gold medals.


The university is situated in Santa Clara, California, adjacent to the city of San Jose in Santa Clara County at the southern part of the Bay Area. It is commonly known by the abbreviation SCU; its students and 81,000 alumni, which live in all fifty states and around the world, are called "Santa Clarans" or "Broncos," and its athletic teams are called the Broncos. The school is promoted as "the Jesuit university in Silicon Valley."

Built around historic Mission Santa Clara, the present university is home to a population of approximately 5,435 undergraduate and 3,335 master's, Juris Doctor, and PhD students. The institution employs 522 full-time faculty members, who are divided between four professional schools and the College of Arts and Sciences, all of which are located on the 106-acre (43 ha) mission campus. In July 2009 the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley (JST), formerly an independent institution, legally merged with the university, taking the name "Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University." Although a division of SCU, it retains its campus in Berkeley, California. JST is one of two Jesuit seminaries in the United States with ecclesiastical faculties approved by the Vatican's Congregation for Catholic Education. The other, Weston Jesuit School of Theology, completed a similar affiliation with Boston College in June 2008, becoming Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.

For the 2013-2014 academic year, the university's operating budget was $387 million, and its endowment was over $760 million. For the same period, undergraduate tuition and fees totaled $42,156 and the average cost of room and board was $12,546. ... [more on wikipedia]

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Santa Clara University", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0

Santa Clara University Details

Santa Clara University Details
detail value
conferenceWest Coast Conference
overall ROI rank[98
scores validTrue
Common Questions...

What are the academic rankings for Santa Clara University?

1. number 123 for Academics.

2. number 98 for ROI (Return on Investment).

What universities are similar to Santa Clara University?

1. Wake Forest University

2. Southern Methodist University

3. University of San Diego

4. College of William and Mary

5. Brown University

6. Emory University

7. Brandeis University

National Academic Rankings

(summary of all ranking placements)

Santa Clara University National Academic Rankings

Santa Clara University National Academic Rankings
category rank scores difficulty smartest brainpower faculty research salary ROI overall ROI
West Coast Conference212226622
West Coast Region1414161321282658
State of California1311131217201858
Top Ten Top25012395125951511531598998
Top Ten West Coast Conference212226622

Peer Universities / Similar Universities

(mathematically similar student body, size, academics, stem, salary... etc)

Santa Clara University Peer Universities, Similar Universities to Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University Peer Universities, Similar Universities to Santa Clara University
match image university state conference public level rank overall ROI
Wake Forest UniversityNorth CarolinaAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateExcellent6650
Southern Methodist UniversityTexasAmerican Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent8073
University of San DiegoCaliforniaPioneer Football League / West...PrivateGood203195
College of William and MaryVirginiaColonial Athletic AssociationPublicExcellent5460
Brown UniversityRhode IslandIvy LeaguePrivateElite2534
Emory UniversityGeorgiaUniversity Athletic AssociationPrivateExcellent3629
Brandeis UniversityMassachusettsUniversity Athletic AssociationPrivateExcellent46116
Boston CollegeMassachusettsAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateExcellent4775
Yale UniversityConnecticutIvy LeaguePrivateElite337
University of ChicagoIllinoisUniversity Athletic AssociationPrivateElite1014
The College of New JerseyNew JerseyNew Jersey Athletic ConferencePublicGood164193
Dartmouth CollegeNew HampshireIvy LeaguePrivateElite1921
University of Notre DameIndianaAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateElite3112
University of RichmondVirginiaColonial Athletic Association ...PrivateExcellent128150
Oberlin CollegeOhioNorth Coast Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent8155
Colgate UniversityNew YorkPatriot LeaguePrivateExcellent9283
George Washington UniversityWashington DCAtlantic 10 ConferencePrivateExcellent51135
Barnard CollegeNew YorkIvy LeaguePrivateExcellent104176
Gettysburg CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateExcellent170148
Wheaton CollegeIllinoisCollege Conference of Illinois...PrivateExcellent149114
Dickinson CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateExcellent187201
Lewis & Clark CollegeOregonNorthwest ConferencePrivateExcellent179221
Baylor UniversityTexasBig Twelve ConferencePrivateGood134128
Macalester CollegeMinnesotaMinnesota Intercollegiate Ath ConfPrivateExcellent133146
Colorado CollegeColoradoSouthern Collegiate Athletic C...PrivateExcellent149160
Occidental CollegeCaliforniaSouthern California Intercoll ...PrivateExcellent158162
Rhodes CollegeTennesseeSouthern Athletic AssociationPrivateExcellent191147
Miami University-OxfordOhioMid American ConferencePublicGood11867
Davidson CollegeNorth CarolinaPioneer Football League / Atla...PrivateExcellent155129
Boston UniversityMassachusettsPatriot LeaguePrivateExcellent45116
Kenyon CollegeOhioNorth Coast Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent14791
University of North Carolina at Chapel HillNorth CarolinaAtlantic Coast ConferencePublicExcellent3764
Whitman CollegeWashingtonNorthwest ConferencePrivateExcellent153154
University of California-Santa BarbaraCaliforniaBig West ConferencePublicGood63122
University of RochesterNew YorkUniversity Athletic AssociationPrivateExcellent3993
Villanova UniversityPennsylvaniaColonial Athletic Association ...PrivateExcellent9968
Tulane University of LouisianaLouisianaAmerican Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent61106
Wesleyan UniversityConnecticutNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite73137
Yeshiva UniversityNew YorkSkyline ConferencePrivateGood141208
Furman UniversitySouth CarolinaSouthern ConferencePrivateGood232192
Union UniversityTennesseeGulf South ConferencePrivateGood225213
University of PennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaIvy LeaguePrivateElite127
University of Puget SoundWashingtonNorthwest ConferencePrivateGood227223
Middlebury CollegeVermontNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite90135
Muhlenberg CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateGood223217
Wellesley CollegeMassachusettsNew England Women's & Men's At...PrivateElite78158
Clark UniversityMassachusettsNew England Women's & Men's At...PrivateGood201224
Denison UniversityOhioNorth Coast Athletic ConferencePrivateGood204170
Trinity UniversityTexasSouthern Collegiate Athletic C...PrivateGood212170
Hamilton CollegeNew YorkNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite115153

Academic Peer Universities / Similar Academics

(mathematically similar academics)

Santa Clara University Academic Peer Universities, Similar Academic Universities to Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University Academic Peer Universities, Similar Academic Universities to Santa Clara University
match image university state conference public level rank overall ROI
St Olaf CollegeMinnesotaMinnesota Intercollegiate Ath ConfPrivateExcellent144127
SUNY College at GeneseoNew YorkState University of New York A...PublicExcellent111184
Bucknell UniversityPennsylvaniaPatriot LeaguePrivateExcellent13193
University of RichmondVirginiaColonial Athletic Association ...PrivateExcellent128150
Kenyon CollegeOhioNorth Coast Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent14791
United States Naval AcademyMarylandDivision I Independents / Patr...PublicExcellent12648
Illinois Institute of TechnologyIllinoisDivision III IndependentsPrivateGood12255
Atlantic 10 Conference (Average)-Atlantic 10 Conference-Conf-Good-158
Colorado CollegeColoradoSouthern Collegiate Athletic C...PrivateExcellent149160
Bryn Mawr CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateExcellent137205
Reed CollegeOregonNo Conference AffiliationPrivateExcellent106144
Scripps CollegeCaliforniaSouthern California Intercoll ...PrivateElite127204
University of VermontVermontAmerica EastPublicAboveAverage136191
University of Maryland-Baltimore CountyMarylandAmerica EastPublicAboveAverage130174
Drexel UniversityPennsylvaniaColonial Athletic AssociationPrivateAboveAverage120134
University of Missouri-ColumbiaMissouriSoutheastern ConferencePublicAboveAverage12198
University at BuffaloNew YorkMid American ConferencePublicAboveAverage124190
Syracuse UniversityNew YorkAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateAboveAverage172216
University of Nebraska-LincolnNebraskaBig Ten ConferencePublicAboveAverage11998
University of California-IrvineCaliforniaBig West ConferencePublicAboveAverage108162
University of ArizonaArizonaPacific 12 ConferencePublicAverage12486